WHY: Destigmatize and improve men’s mental health.
HOW: By creating a supportive space for men to be vulnerable and talk about their emotions.
WHAT: Men’s Retreats.
It all stems from my own struggle with mental health. I’ve been battling with depression for the better part of my adult life, to the point of being suicidal numerous times. Very few people knew about this until three years ago when I came out and openly talked about it.
I didn’t want to acknowledge and accept that I suffered from this. Not me; I am this happy, energetic guy with the biggest smile on his face who always followed his dreams! Every time, I tried to wave my depression away, sweep it under the rug, or use some of my preferred escape routes: partying, alcohol, cocaine, and women.
Ultimately, it came to a tipping point in August of 2020. Either I was going to acknowledge, accept, and expose it, or I would’ve ended it all.
I needed to expose the big elephant in the room—my depression.
So I did, and I initially thought, WTF have I done? I am completely naked now. I have exposed my most significant and embarrassing secret to everyone. But I also knew deep within me that this was my true path. What I’ve learned over these three years is that vulnerability isn’t a sign of weakness: It’s the embodiment of strength and courage that shows you have some fucking balls.
I knew that my story would encourage other men to share their struggles, whether it was depression, anxiety, relationship issues, or substance abuse—all under the umbrella of mental health.
Men are experts at hiding their struggles, but when one opens up, it often paves the way for others. I aim to set a huge ripple effect in motion; hopefully, more men will join and do their part. 💫
There’s a HUGE need for this in the world. There are so many incredible women’s retreats out there, but barely any retreats for men to explore their emotional and vulnerable selves.
Brené Brown wisely said, “Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It’s a relationship between equals. Only when we know our own darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognize our shared humanity.”
And that’s what we do at Bro Retreats. We recognize our shared humanity as equals, knowing we’re not alone. The more we share our darkness, imperfections, doubts, insecurities, and fears, the more we can identify ourselves with each other. We empower one another through the simple act of showing compassion. ♥️